02/06/2008: What have we been up to?
It's been a long time since our last update...what's been going on?
* November 07 - Aroc Brindabella Challenge, Canberra (Angry, Pa & Stixy) 17th overall, 8th mixed
* December 07 - Urban Polaris, Canberra (Angry & Pa) 87th overall, 15th mens-vets
* December 07 - Aroc Paddy Pallin Adventure Race, Avoca (Angry, Pa & Stixy) 35th overall, 13th mixed
* March 08 - Aroc Deuter Rat Race, Canberra (Angry, Pa & Stixy) 14th overall, 8th mixed
* April 08 - Keen Alps to Ocean, Falls Creek (Angry & Ant) 8th overall, 5th male pairs
* April 08 - Ma & Pa Egg have a blast trekking the Kokoda track
* April 08 - Aroc Paddy Pallin Adventure Race, Lake Macquarie (Angry, Paul & Stixy) 6th overall, 3rd mixed
...and to keep things rolling we're about to pack up kit and head off to GeoQuest 2008. HQ for GeoQuest will be held at Emerald Beach this year. Link to Geo Live Web Coverage for all the goss over the weekend! And stay tuned for more updates and stories on all of the above.
08/09/2007: Pa Egg comes out of retirement for XPD 2007!
We would like to extend a massive CONGRATULATIONS to the crew from 'It's All Good' (Brett Sparkes, Kevin Humphrey, Kath Copland and of course, Pa Egg) for placing an incredible 10th in this years XPD race held on the Whitsunday Coast. Pa Egg was called to arms 1 week before the event! With little time to contemplate what he had gotten himself in for, Pa had packed his race gear and was on the road to the amazing Whitsunday Coast. "For almost 18 months the thought of doing XPD was the furthest thing from my mind. After completing XPD Tasmania in 06 I was over endless hours on the MTB, walking half asleep at night, race food and numb fingers and numb under carriage for weeks after the event. Two weeks prior to XPD 07, Brett Sparkes asked me if I was interested in doing XPD as they were a team mate short, I said I would help out as a last resort only and to keep trying for another team member. With a little over one week before the event Brett called back and said that I was in. I spent months preparing and training for Tassie, this time I was packed and ready to drive up from Newcastle in three days. What had I done?"...read on...
25/06/2007: About Bloody Time!!!
After an extended 12 month stay in central QLD, moving house 4 times, a wedding and a ridiculously long honeymoon in Italy, HardTale finally got off their arse and did something! Well actually, Ant and Bowser did something. They destroyed their kayak on the way to a very respectable 11th place at the Keen Great Ocean Road Adventure race in March. Not only that, but they featured in a two page spread of Vol 10 No 6 Triathlon and Multisport Magazine! Way to kickstart a comeback boys!!!!
Viva Italia – Stixy and the Angryman honeymooned in Italy for six weeks this April/May. Far too many adventures to recount, so here’s a link to the emails they sent back home and the pictures to match.
GeoQuest for a refresher – Not having raced since GeoQuest last year, Paul and Matt grabbed some unlikely suspects in Pa and the newest Bacon, Sah to flush out the cobwebs for 2007. It was a great training weekend in the lead up to XPD and the stories will be debated for years to come. Here’s what Pa and Angry had to say about the adventure.
MTBO – it’s training on steroids. Angry finally attached a mapboard to his bike and set off into the bush to find what all the fuss is about. Here’s his story.
12/10/2006: Scott 24hr Race Report
HardTale HQ gives the lowdown on the Scott 24hr...read on
09/10/2006: Scott 24hr Mountain Bike Event
HardTale HQ set up camp at the Scott 24 hr mountain bike race with the aim of encouraging some rookies to go the distance. The event was a raging success as two teams and one solo rider charged lap for lap on an extremely dusty and bumpy
25/09/2006: Max Adventure 24 Hour
The event was a sellout with 100 competitors entering, with a high number of two person teams...Read more about what Pa Egg has to say on this years' Max Adventure 24 Hour event...
22/09/2006: HardTale.com has gone to the dogs...
We've been out of action for all the wrong reasons, but Pa and Angry are off this weekend to the Max Advntr 24hr...we hope to see you down there.
October will be jam packed with fun. Kicking off on the 7th with the Scott 24hr MTB, followed by the World Rogaining Champs and the Hawkesbury Classic.
November is looking equally impressive, and we’ll keep you posted as we map out our travel plans.
13/08/06: Engagement Bash
There was plenty of riding, paddling & trampolining at our engagement bash this month.
Todd Stafford was King of the Mountain in the MTB event, while Hughy snuck past Julie & Angry in the paddling sprint. Thanks to all that attended, to help make it such a great fun weekend! Link to pics...
11/08/2006: Hardtales' latest recruit – Jasmin Isabella
Congratulations to Paul & Kate on the arrival of baby Jasmin Isabella! With legs like her Dad, she’ll be a great addition to the team.
26/06/2006: Patience my friend
The Tiger Leeches shrivelled under the salt shaker and the support crew slaved tirelessly, all-the-while questioning our sanity…and their own…read more of Angry’s account of the 2006 Mountain Designs Geoquest ...
26/06/2006: GeoQuest 2006, an old mans tale
Pa has laid down some ink for yet another memorable account of the adventures of an old man racing. To find out how much fun he had and whether you can keep up with the super coach, read on….
23/05/2006: Aussie Adventure Racing Survey
With so much debate on Sleepmonsters and around the event centres, about courses, event styles and the like, we decided it was time to do something that will help Australian Race Organisers meet the needs of Aussie adventure racers. HardTale contacted each of the six major race promoters/organisers in
What we have come up with is a survey, which should hopefully help race organisers to put on events that the majority of competitors will enjoy, whilst also exposing any niche markets within our AR community that additional events could be created for.
The results of the survey will be made completely public; however your anonymity will remain in tact.
What the race organisers do with the results is completely up to them. One fear that has been voiced about this survey is that it will lead to all races becoming the same, so what’s our response to that? It is important to remember that each Event Organiser will always have their own flavour. Some have a penchant for short races, some long. Some like to play in remote locations and others in the city. We need to grant them the respect they deserve when it comes to creating wonderfully unique events, because basically that is what they have been doing to date.
So here’s your chance to have a say! It will take about 3 to 5 minutes to complete, so what are you waiting for? Link to survey now...
15/05/2006: Freya scores another solo 24hr MTB win
Our little endurance bunny jumped across the ditch last weekend and taught her mother country’s MTB hounds a thing or two about going all night. In what she described as a very relaxed race, she cleaned up to maintain a perfect record for 2006. With the World Championships looming ever closer, things are looking pretty good for the Scrub Monkey.
14/05/2006: Pa storms into the top ten!
In what could turn out to be the most controversial race in Aus this year, Pa kept it steady to finish with a very respectable 7th place at the weekends Sydney Arrow 24 Hour race. Talk about one for the vets! At 54, Pa is still doing the hard yards and if ever there was an advertisement for Adventure Racing being the sport of all ages, Pa and his 7 year old grandson, Doug, would have to be on the poster! Well done
12/05/2006: Dirtworks 100km Classic
HardTale’s Hugh Stodart and Emily Dirksen had another crack at the Dirt Works Classic with Hugh covering the 100km mountain bike course in 4:45:50 for 3rd Veteran Male and 13th outright and Emily took a little longer at 7:04:06 for 6th Elite female. Hugh once again stuck it to the Elite males, outpacing 16 of the nations top 26 riders present. Pa Egg also showed up for a spin and claimed a very impressive 4th place in the Super Masters category for the 50km course, despite a nasty stack with 15km to go (while in 2nd) and then dropping his chain twice due to a bent hanger. It just goes to show that you’re never to old to start racing and riding smoothly is the key to solid results. Well done guys. For a full list of results, check out www.maxadventure.com.au and follow the links to DirtWorks.
10/05/2006: The Alternate Reality of Racing
The leeches sucked, we bled and the pace picked up. Back on foot we reeled in the teams that had slipped away on the ride. Then, high on a mountain pass, Gary introduced us all to a snake that wasn’t a snake. He was convinced it was a stick, Dave declared it to be a snake and Julie wasn’t game to take a closer look. When it turned and spoke to me, I knew it was time to bail. At 2am, on the cusp of day 5, our minds wandered into the world of monsters yet again. The race seemed to be a blur of darkness, interspersed with the glow of four LED’s. I struggled to remember a time when it wasn’t dark...read more...
28/04/2006: Em turns 21, again
Happy Birthday Emily!
23/04/2006: Freya wins Solo Only MTB Championships
HardTale’s resident animal has claimed her second consecutive Australian Solo Only 24Hr MTB title. This result ensures Frey an entry to the 2006 World Championships, where she will be striving to improve on her 4th place of 2005. Congratulations Frey on another fantastic ride. For a full list of results, go to http://www.corc.asn.au/news/ and scroll down to CORC Easter Solo-Only 24Hr Results.
11/04/2006: Hugh creeps closer to the big 4.0.
Happy Birthday Hugh!
12/03/2006: HardTale.com back in business
After nearly 6 months since their last race, HardTale.com have entered the 5th edition of the Mountain Designs Geoquest 48Hour Adventure Race. Hailed as
02/03/2006: HardTales in the Wild finish XPD
Pa Egg and his band of merry adventurers have knocked off the longest race in Australian history today, completing the monster course in 8 days, 10 hours and 7 minutes!!! Well done Chris, Gina, Danny and Greg on a very solid race! For more on the race, here’s a story from
28/02/2006: Mawson 1st all Male team at XPD
Ant steered team Mawson to a very solid 7th place outright and 1st in the all male category at the first round of the Adventure Racing World Series in
28/02/2006: Tangerine place 8th at XPD
After 5 days, 22 hours and 46 minutes of racing, Team Tangerine have completed their first ever expedition adventure race in a very credible 8th place and 4th Australian Team. In what was to become the first round of the 2006 Adventure Racing World Series, HardTale’s Angryman joined up with the worlds best mixed rogaining duo and helped this rookie standard finish
03/02/2006: Wildside 06
Our endurance queen wandered to the Apple Isle again in January to have a crack at Australia's biggest mountain bike stage race event...Wildside! This year out, Freya qualified for the veteran class (yes that means she is getting old...but definitely not slower) and made the most of it by cleaning up the category for 1st place and 5th outright behind some very impressive company, most of whom are cross-country whippets. With two time world champion Lisa Mathison placing 3rd just ahead of Freya it shows the depth of talent in Australian women's mountain biking and puts us in good stead for the Commonwealth Games next month. Well done Monkey!
27/01/2006: HardTales in the Wild
With Angry joining with ‘Team Tangerine’ for XPD, the hunt was on for a replacement on ‘Team HardTales in the Wild’. It didn’t take long for the perfect substitute to put his hand up and Chris Milne was that man. Last weekend, with the help of our mate Andy Harmer, he took Pa, Gina and Danny on a canyoning adventure that they would never have dreamed possible. Here’s what Pa has to say about it.
24/01/2006: Fierce Competitors
The latest edition of Outdoor Magazine (February/March) has a brief article on the Adventure Racing World Championships held in
24/01/2006: Three Weeks to XPD
It’s only three weeks to XPD kicks off on the apple isle and Angry is starting to feel the nervous tension. After a trouble free lead up, it seems that the hip injury that plagued him throughout 2005 might just be a thing of the past. Fingers Crossed. Now it’s just a matter of keeping up with Dave Baldwin and Julie Quinn, the reigning Mixed Rogaining World Champions and 4th place team from Mountain Designs Geoquest 2005!
22/12/2005: Festive Cheer
Whether you celebrate Christmas, or holidays of another denomination, you gotta admit that December and January are full on festive times in the land downunder! With so many long weekends and public and school holidays to soak up the sun on our golden beaches, it's hard not to be happy. Where ever you are and what ever you are doing, be safe, sunscreen up and look out for one another.
Merry whatever you wanna call it. Team HardTale
22/12/2005: AROC Sprint, Narrabeen
Team Hardtale put in their first sprint appearance for the 05/06' summer and what a show it was. The ever ready Hugh teamed up with Freya and Paul (who had claimed to be retired from sprints). Despite a battering from the elements, our crew kept the pace on all day to claim 3rd in the Premier Mixed category and 6th overall. Great effort guys! For all the detail, check out www.arocsport.com.au.
05/12/05: Team 3 Generations
The most recent round of the AROC Sprint series saw Ma joined by her eldest son Adam and his 7 year old son Douglas to create Adventure Racing history. Young Doug showed a clean set of heels as he become the youngest ever Adventure Racer in
30/11/05: Back on home soil
After a frustrating trip to NZ for the 2005 Adventure Race World Championships, Team HardTale are back on home soil once again. It wasn't as successful as we would have hoped, however the team all learned a little bit more and it is being stored in the memory bank for the next event. With only 5 teams officially reaching the finish line and 8 more remaining ranked on the course, it was definitely a race to remember.
We would like to extend a massive thankyou to Mountain Designs for providing the best possible equipment for the most feared adventure racing terrain on earth. Further special thanks to LineBreak Performance Wear for undergarments that do far more than cover your bits, Hammer Nutrition for fueling our energy needs and Mirage Sea Kayaks for the perfect ocean craft. Finally, thanks to Chris Milne at the Edge Climbing Gym, Tom & Alina at Arocsport, Ron Hazelhurst at Overland 4WD Rentals, Steve Muir at Grafton Paddle Sports and Paul Angel at Lynair International for all their pre-race help.
Tune in next week for Angry's Rant.
27/10/05: AR World Championships
Team HardTale.com Mountain Designs have just about finalised preparations for the upcoming Adventure Race World Championships to be held on New Zealand’s West Coast (South Island), November 14-20.
Ant, Emily, Hugh and Matt will have Ma, Pa and Sarah supporting them as they face the worlds best in arguably the most miserable terrain on earth. This is Lord of the Rings country and will give no free ground to competitors as they traverse their way through 500km of unrelenting mountain ranges, rivers and oceans. Unfortunately no other Aussie teams will be joining HardTale on this adventure, but keep your eye out for Andrew Cooksley on team Balance Bar.
We’ll be offline until about the 24th November, but you can follow all of the action on the ARWC website.
Keep it on two wheels.
19/10/05: Website upgrade
Welcome to the new look and feel website for Team HardTale! It's been a tough season and although we're all feeling kind of tired, the support crew decided it was time for a face lift. Sah has worked tirelessly to refresh things and is still working like crazy to get the webshop up and running. That's right, we're adding a webshop. Racing in New Zealand will break our stride in this area, but we hope to be up and running in time for Christmas. We aim to provide you with access to all the great gear and products that we use ourselves and LineBreak have already offered a fantastic deal on race shirts. You can expect some new areas early next year with more tips and strategies on offer as well as the usual updates and race reports. We hope you like what we've done and would love some feedback. Simply contact us by following the links.
Keep it on two wheels > Angry
10/10/05: Mont 2005
HardTale's Hugh Stodart, Emily Dirksen and Freya Scollay sauntered into the nations capital to compete in the Southern Hemispheres biggest and most gruelling mountain bike race, The Mont 24 Hour. All three lined up in the solo class, braving miserably wet and cold conditions. Very solid placings of 4th and 5th outright in their solo categories were the reward for Emily and Hugh's efforts. Well done guys, great result! For our Scrub Monkey, a week of the flu and less than a months recovery from her brilliant 4th place at the World Championships was too much, and she parked her bike whilst in the lead to sit back and watch from the sidelines. For more information on the event and results visit The Mont website.
3/10/05: Getting hot!
So, how's this weather? Summer is on its way to Australia and things are steaming up. Since the first day of spring, those miserable stealth bombers AKA 'Magpies' have battered the daylights out of Angry's Limar 909, despite a massive set of googlies being drawn on the back! Can't wait for the wretches to get it over with and hatch some bloody chicks!!
HardTale HQ has moved to far North Queensland to enhance the suffering and prepare for the Adventure Race World Championships. Angry is racking up the miles in training while Hugh, Emily, Freya and Ant are all keeping up appearances at local and National events. This weekend coming will see the team competing (albeit all in the solo class) at the Mont 24 Hr Australian MTB championships. Good luck to all.
Pa and Ant have had some good races/results, so stay tuned for their stories later in the week.
Sah is working like crazy to get the new website up and running, so stay tuned late October for some excellent enhancements.
12/9/05: Scrub Monkey 4th in the World!
HardTale's Freya Scollay wandered over to Canada last week with two bikes and a briefcase and the intention of taking in some excellent suffering. In her first ever Solo 24 hour MTB World Championship, Freya pushed herself to an incredible 4th place in the expert class and overall female! 12 months ago Freya competed in her first 24 hour MTB event (The Mont) where she placed 5th and qualified for this years World Champs. Since then Freya competed in two other Solo 24 hours, where she placed 2nd at the Sydney NSW State Champs and 1st at the ACT Solo only National Champs. With this kind of a track record in such a short space of time, the Scrub Monkey surely will be the endurance queen of mountain biking in years to come.
11/8/05: Farewell Mate - James Grant 1980-2005
Today the adventure racing community buried one of its brightest stars. Our hearts are with James' wife Mel and all of his family. You'll be sorely missed mate, your enthusiasm, cunning, competitiveness and good nature have left an everlasting impression on me and all those you touched. To know you went out on two wheels is a small relief, to know you went out giving it everything...well, I guess you didn't know any other way. Goodbye mate.
30/07/05: Six-monthly wrap up
The Adventure Race calendar looks some what disjointed to the untrained eye, but to the seasoned competitor, the summer months are filled with scorching Sprints and the real suffering begins when the mercury falls...read more
25/7/05: HardTale learn how to keep up with AROC
So there is a way to keep up with AROC...leave Angry at TA2!!!! At the Hells Bells in Brisvegas this weekend, HardTale ran two teams, .com and QLD. Both hammered! Angry finally blew his hip gasket and withdrew at TA2, but that just allowed Hugh and hired gun Stu Adams to run free and match AROC pound for pound all the way to the finish for a well earned draw.
Ant steered HardTale QLD to a solid 4th across the line, despite missing the train after TA1 and having to bridge a monster deficit to reel in the front runners. Well done lads, great effort all around.
13/7/05: Grafton Paddle Sports launch website.
Long time supporter of HardTale, Grafton Paddle Sports, have finally launched their website. For the best multisport kayaks and paddles on the market, check www.graftonpaddlesports.com
12/7/05: Mountain Designs join HardTale for World Championships
HardTale have signed up with Aussie adventure store Mountain Designs, for the Adventure race World Championships in New Zealand in November this year. The crew will be proudly outfitted exclusively in Mountain Designs' AR range of outdoor gear including Flash Jackets and Endurace Packs. Welcome aboard Mountain Designs.
11/7/05: SNOW SNOW SNOW!!!
It's finally dumped big in 05! Angry and the support crew took the weekend off to play in the powder and what a time they had. That's him on the Home page, snow shoeing in backcountry before a chilly night out.
11/7/05: Ant and Curt survive Max Sprint
Despite a monster crash on the mountainbike stage, Curt managed to hang in with Ant for a well earned 5th outright at the Gold Coast round of the Kathmandu Sprint on the weekend. The boys were motoring when Curt bit it, requiring 7 stitches in his chin. 2nd in the mens category and 5th outright was a great effort despite the difficulties. Well done lads.